THE MIND OF EVIL exists in black and white only, though Jon Pertwee’s run was the first in colour. This is another serial I’ve never seen, nor know anything about. Six episodes, we’ll do two posts of three a piece.

Episode 1:

 The Doctor and Jo arrive (in Bessie) at a castle. After a guard inspects their passes, they’re given access to H.M. PRISON STANGMOOR.

 We see inside where there’s a loud racket from the cells – the inmates are rowdy as it is time for one of the inmates’ sentences to be carried out. A group of guards and officials enter the cell of George Patrick Barnham, telling him it is time for his sentence to be carried out.

 George is rather uncooperative, throwing things at them and struggling, but he’s overpowered by the guards.

 The Doctor, Jo and other observers are in a room with a strange machine. The Doctor tells Jo he’s there out of scientific curiousity, not morbid fascination like the others, and he has concerns about the “Keller process”.

 A man (the warden, I’m gathering) comes in and thanks everyone for coming and introduces Professor Kettering, who will explain the process they’re about to see demonstrated. The professor talks about how capital punishment is no longer used (abolished in 1969 in Great Britain) and how this new “infallible” (yep, he said it, so the Titanic rule of storytelling lets us know that it is most certainly not infallible) process is much better.

 The Doctor keeps muttering to Jo, which Keller can hear and gets upset about. Apparently Professor Emil Keller discovered that there were “evil impulses” in criminals and the machine removes them. The Doctor continues to (not quite) heckle.

 This demonstration is the 113th use of the machine; the storage box (where the negative impulses are stored) is at sixty-five percent full.

 George is brought in, hooked up to the machine and the sentence of the court is carried out. George screams out. There seems to be some difficulty, though Kettering says that there was only a minor malfunction and the machine compensated.

 The Doctor and Kettering butt heads. They won’t be having tea together, I’m sure.

 In the medical wing, Dr. Summers tends to George, though it seems he’s recovering as standard. The doctor receives a call – there’s a dead man in the process room. Kettering makes some blatantly sweeping guess that he died of heart attack, a delayed reaction from observing the process.

 The Doctor and Jo talk; she mentions the terror on the man’s face and bite/scratch marks on him. The Doctor says he wants to hold off contacting the Brig, and Jo says it’s just as well – today is the first ever World Peace Conference and the Brig is busy running security for it.

 The Brig is on the phone, talking to someone from the Ministry, getting an additional assignment – the transport of some missile. Yates says that’s all they need, what with the conference going on. Brig puts Yates in charge of the transport detail.

 A woman, Captain Chin Lee, of the People’s Republic of China, dressed in military garb, storms in to the Brig’s office. She says there’s been an “outrage” against her delegation and she holds him responsible. Important documents have been stolen from their suite. She suspects “the imperialist Americans for this crime”. She threatens withdrawal from the conference if there are any further complications. She leaves, goes outside, and walks past her awaiting chauffeur (much to his confusion) and walks to a park across the street. Standing at a waste bucket, she pulls out some papers and sets them on fire. She’s acting a bit odd and there’s a sinister hum and we see a metal disc attached behind her ear…

 Back at Stangmoor, The Doctor and Kettering continue to argue over the machine and The Doctor’s reservations.

 The dead man was a medical student; his post mortem reveals he died of heart failure, though he didn’t have a weak heart. His medical records indicate a fear of rats. The Doctor asks Dr. Summers if the marks on the face were indicative of rats, and he says they certainly are. (So he’s a vet as well as a prison doctor?)

 Kettering insults The Doctor by saying, “…if you were a scientist, you’d understand.” In his outrage, The Doctor almost says he’s been a scientist for several thousand years – stopping at “thousand”. This is the 2nd time the Third Doctor has made a claim of thousands of years of life – when the Second Doctor specifically stated that he was only approximately 450 Earth years old.

 The Doctor storms out and the warden tells Kettering to give the machine a thorough check.

 The Brig returns to his office to find a flurry of phone calls. He calls Yates (who’s busy with scheduling the route for the missile) in to discuss Chin Lee’s papers – they’re nowhere to be found and the Brig suspects Chin Lee herself. While they talk, a phone call comes in from the captain – it turns out the delegate is dead!

 Kettering opens up the console on the machine to check wiring, but suddenly there’s a throbbing, pulsing sound and he clutches his head. In the prison, the inmates begin to get rowdy, rioting. Kettering tries to do something with the machine, but he is overcome with the sensation of water and acts like he’s trying to swim.

 We see Dr Summers covering him with a blanket. The warden asks how he died and the doctor says all signs are indicative of drowning! Jo and The Doctor realise the timing of his death coincides with the riot that just broke out. (Not that they showed a real riot, just sounds of the inmates being exceptionally rowdy.)

 The Doctor tells the warden that the machine is dangerous and needs to be destroyed. He says he will report it to the Home Office, as he doesn’t have that authority.

 At the Chinese delegate’s suite, the Brig is handling the investigation. Chin Lee says that she called him immediately when she entered and found the delegate’s body. The Brig seems more suspicious of her than before.

 Talking to the warden, The Doctor finds out that when Professor Emil Keller installed the machine (about a year prior), he had an assistant – “an attractive Chinese girl”.

 Capt Chin Lee is visibly nervous as the Brig checks on the timing of her phone call to him. He confronts her about waiting twenty-four minutes before reporting the crime.

 George gains consciousness in the medical wing. Dr. Summers checks on him, with Jo watching. George says he feels fine, but doesn’t remember Summers. Summers tells Jo that physically he’s fine, his memory is “a bit hazy, but that’s to be expected”.

 He tells Jo that Kettering drowned, his lungs were full of water… in the middle of a perfectly dry room.

 As The Doctor tries to disable the machine, it activates. The inmates begin “rioting” again. The Doctor is mentally assaulted… we get more bug-eyed Jon Pertwee facial contortions and an overlay of flames and he begins to cry out… and the credits roll.

 So far, not bad. Looks like a blend of politics and intrigue and and evil machine. Definitely interested to see where it goes.


Episode 2:

 Jo walks in to see The Doctor standing, shaking, crying out. Apparently her walking in is enough to break the power of the machine from “burning” him alive. He chastises her for coming to him just then, though obviously she saved him. (This is rather typical of the Third Doctor, though.)

 The Doctor reveals that he saw fire… it was a memory from long ago, he watched a planet burn and that was what the machine attacked him with. As Jo is about to leave, Yates shows up to bring The Doctor back to London, as per the Brig’s orders. Mike says he’ll use force, but The Doctor uses his Venusian Karate to keep him at bay. When Yates explains why the Brig wants him in London, he agrees to go, but tells Jo (who is staying at the prison) to make sure nobody enters the room, that it is locked up.

 Benton is tailing Captain Chin Lee, when suddenly he is assaulted mentally – the machine, through Chin Lee, attacks his mind. A pedestrian arrives and helps Benton, but Chin Lee has made off. Benton runs after her, trying to find her, but she gives him the slip.

 The Doctor and Yates arrive as the Brig is giving Benton a verbal drubbing for losing her. Benton is dismissed and departs. We see a technician working on the phone routers across the street, apparently hooking up eavesdropping equipment.

 He enters a small work tent (where equipment, coffee, the like are stored) and takes off a mask, revealing himself to be The Master! (Yay, I wasn’ even expecting him, though I certainly should have! This is the second serial in a row where he’s pretended to be a phone installation/technician worker.)

 He’s eavesdropping on Captain Yates phone conversation regarding the transport of the missile. Yates tells the man he’s talking to that he’ll give him the route once it’s been finalised. The Master departs the tent and crosses through the park (the same one Chin Lee burned the papers in), getting in a waiting car.

 The Brig agrees to The Doctor’s demands that he get the Home Office motivated in dismantling the Keller process machine (oh ho, I just had a thought… oh yeah. You’ve probably already thought it yourself) and then the Brig says they’re off to see the new Chinese delegate.

 The Doctor greets Fu Peng, the new delegate, in his native Hokien. This makes Fu Peng very happy and he becomes quite amicable. The Doctor drops the name of Tse-Tung (as in Mao, the Chairman of the People’s Republic of China) and Fu Peng becomes even more friendly. (This is another ‘thing’ about the Third Doctor – drops names all the time. And nobody ever doubts him when he does. Granted, lots of incarnations of The Doctor drop names, but Pertwee’s seems to be especially bad about it.)

 At Stangmoor, an orderly, Vosper, is brought into a room to clean it up (I’m guessing it’s George’s old room.)

 Jo visits George in the medical wing. His memory is still quite hazy. He seems to be suffering from amnesia – Summers had to tell him his own name. When Jo consults with him, Summers says that he feels the machine overreacted, taking all of George’s negative impulses, leaving him either an idiot or a saint.

 Vosper cleans the room under the watch of the guard, while the inmates get rowdier. When the guard slips out to check on things, Vosper pulls a gun out and hides it under the pillow on the bed.

 The warden and a bevy of guards come in, escorting an inmate, Mailer. They tell him he’ll be in there until his sentence is carried out (guessing he’s next sentenced for the Keller machine.) Mailer tells them “Nobody’s turning me into a zombie.” Two guards are left in the cell with Mailer. They break out a checkerboard while Mailer lays down, checking for the gun.

 When food is brought it, he grabs the new guard, holding him hostage with the gun.

 Yates comes to the Brig’s office for papers regarding the moving of “the Thunderbolt”, which is the missile – a warhead of nerve gas. They’re moving it so that it can be dumped at the bottom of the ocean, as nerve gas weapons have been outlawed. The Doctor criticises them for lack of tact, moving a missile during a peace conference.

 Yates requests Benton for the detail, and the Brig makes a crack about losing a Chinese girl, which gets The Doctor’s attention. The Doctor makes the connection between Chin Lee and Keller’s assistant.

 Chin Lee is seen entering The Master’s car. She tries to resist, but he locks eyes with her and and reasserts his control, then checks on the disc behind her ear. He gives her instructions to kill the American delegate that night and then dismisses her.

 Mailer is getting the other inmates free. They’ve taken quite a few guards hostage, but are planning to take more, perhaps a doctor. They break into the medical wing and take Jo and Summers hostage.

 Chin Lee is spotted returning to the Chinese delegate suite; from there, she calls the American delegate, Senator Alcott, asking him to come to the suite to meet with Fu Peng. The Senator protests that this is highly irregular at this time of night, but eventually agrees to come alone. She unlocks the door and lies in wait. He knocks and calls out (so where is the delegate and his staff?)

 The Senator walks on, calling for Fu Peng, when Chin Lee closes the door in the office behind him. He invites him to sit down, as the delegate is on the way. She turns off the lights, and suddenly the Senator clutches his head, complaining about a noise in her head. In his mind, Chin Lee has taken on the form of a dragon. He begs her to stay away… and the credits roll.

 Lots of Senators I know are afraid of dragons.

Episode 3:

 The Doctor, Fu Peng and the Brig suddenly walk in (ah, that’s where the delegate was, having drinks with them… or something) and see the dragon – Chin Lee has been physically transformed into one! She turns on them, but The Doctor stops the Brig from firing his gun. The Doctor says something in Chinese to her and she changes back and faints.

 The Doctor says that it was a “collective hallucination, nothing more”. So it wasn’t physical? They check on her, then see Senator Alcott. The Doctor checks on him, to say that he’s not dead, but is in shock.

 Fu Peng finds the telepathic amplifier (the disc behind Chin Lee’s ear), and The Doctor says it amplifies the thoughts from the machine at Stangmoor Prison to her victims.

 Back at the prison, the inmates have their hostages; guards have the wing surrounded.

 The Doctor explains to Fu Peng that someone was using Chin Lee to attempt to drive the world into war. The delegate feels confident that The Doctor can handle things and returns to the Embassy. The Doctor talks to Chin Lee in Cantonese as she wakes up, but they switch to English.

 Jo and Summers are kept in the cell Mailer (and before him, George) were interred in. Mailer tells Summers he’s taking a message to the warden, Miss Grant will stay behind as insurance while Summers delivers the demands.

 The chauffeur sees The Doctor and Chin Lee walk by and then he exits his car, heading towards the buildings.

 Benton barks orders at the men, trying to get the missile loaded onto the truck.

 The Brig is asleep at his desk when The Doctor and Chin Lee arrive at his office. He invites her to sit down and calls for some coffee. Yates calls in before much discussion can be had, to report there’s a hold up. They happen to discuss Chin Lee, and since The Master is still listening in, he hears that they’re onto his plan. He tells his driver to go to Stangmoor Prison.

 Chin Lee explains that she met Emil Keller at an Embassy function and learned of his project to reform hardened criminals. He invited her to attend the installation at Stangmoor Prison. She is having difficulties recalling any details about her meetings with Professor Keller. The Doctor listens, making connections, until he says, “Post-hypnotic block, his usual technique.”

 The Brig catches on and it’s out – they know they’re dealing with The Master.

 The inmates bring the prisoners to another area on the wing. They do a lot of that.

 Summers delivers the demands to the warden. The chief guard says his men are prepared, they’ve got B-wing surrounded and are prepared to rush. The warden has the police inspector call the Brig to report that Jo’s been taken hostage.

 The warden (rather suddenly) decides that it’s a “deadlock” and he will talk to Mailer. As he approaches, the inmates get ready to talk to him, but George suddenly shows up, looking for Dr. Summers. Mailer instructs his men to take George away because, “He gives me the creeps.” While they’re distracted, Jo grabs Mailer’s gun. The inmates and guards begin fighting and the warden

 The Master, smoking his stogie, rides in his car to Stangmoor Prison. He’s brought to the warden’s office. He is informed that UNIT has been investigating (not that he didn’t already know this) and their scientific advisor is on his way. Professor Keller asks to see Mailer before he sees to the machine.

 Keller is brought to Mailer’s cell and everyone leaves the two men alone. (REALLY? After Mailer just led a riot, first off, he’d be in the hole, and secondly, IF they allowed him to see anyone it’d be with him handcuffed and with a guard present at all times. Big fail here.)

 Mailer tries to get rough with Keller, but The Master puts him in his place. He tells him he’s here to help him. He opens his case and gives Mailer a gun and shows him some grenade-like objects, gas masks and other implements within. He says they’re going to create some havoc.

 The machine starts humming and the inmates begin making noise. The Master calls for the guard and he and Mailer begin their havoc-making.

 In the medical wing, Jo, George and Summers are playing cards when the alarm is sounded. As they try to leave, they’re taken captive.

 The Doctor sits outside the prison, honking his horn, impatiently waiting. A guard comes out, checks his pass. The Master tells him to let The Doctor in, where Mailer awaits him, with a gun. They bring him to the warden’s office, where The Master greets him. The Master tells The Doctor that he needs his assistance dealing with the machine, which seems to have developed “a mind of its own”. He reveals that he’s after the Thunderbolt missile, as well.

 “Well, it’s a lunatic scheme. Still, that’s to be expected.” – The Doctor, after hearing The Master’s plan to use the missile to blow up the peace conference, sending the world into war. The Doctor flips the table and escapes. In the prison yard, the inmates fire at him and give pursuit.

 Mailer and The Master catch The Doctor in the process room. Mailer handcuffs The Doctor into the Keller Machine chair. The Master dismisses Mailer, then tells him that he’s effected repairs on the machine. He wants to see how long The Doctor can hold out against the machine.

 The Doctor puts the telepathic amplifier on The Doctor, saying it can be used to amplify against the wearer, as well. He then sets the machine and departs, saying he wishes he could stay to watch his nightmare, but has other business to attend to. (Ugh, classic villain puts hero in death trap and the LEAVES… I know it was indicative of the time period, but DAMN, I hate that trope.)

 OH MOST EXCELLENT… the fear he’s confronted with this time are Daleks – we hear the voices, “Exterminate! Exterminate!” as Pertwee goes into more ridiculous facial contortions… and the credits roll. 

Advertisements